Bridging God’s Word into Everyday Life

By James C. Sprouse, Senior Pastor

Why does Trinity Church exist? According to Matthew’s Gospel, the reason is made clear – we are to “Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you.” Matthew 28:19-20.

Based on the Great Commission, Trinity Church follows the stated purpose of the United Methodist Church, “to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.” The mission of our congregation from our Next Level Innovation weekend is Bridging God’s Word into Everyday Life. I see this as a four-fold task.

First: we reach out to people and welcome them into Trinity Church. We have the missional challenge of connecting our church to the world around our facilities, and the communities where we work, play, shop, study, and worship. We have the missional challenge of connecting our church to all the hurts, doubts and questions of the people around us. Our mission is to find them, reach out to them, listen to them, accept them and share the gospel in word and deed.

Second: we relate to people and help them deepen their spiritual relationship with God. Trinity does this by providing opportunities for growing closer to God. Whether guests or long-time members, we all need God’s love in Christ. Through worship, prayer, study, honest sharing, and finding where God needs us to be in mission – we help each other discover that the Holy Spirit is not far off but a present reality among us. We need to encourage each other to give our lives to Christ, and to center our lives in a very real, living and present God.

Third: we nurture people in Christian lifestyle. Trinity Church helps people practice the disciplines of discipleship. Our church exists to serve not be served. We gather for worship not only for our own personal spiritual formation and growth, but also to prepare and equip ourselves for doing the work of love and be Christ’s disciples in our community and world. We are strengthened for ministry through worship, baptism, Communion, Bible study, prayer and all other means of grace.

Fourth: we support people in their ministry. As members of Trinity Church, we’re sent into our community and world to serve others in need and make our community and world more loving and just. We believe the Holy Spirit empowers and guides us. Where ever we go we can expect to meet Christ already at work. Our congregation exists, in part, to surround and support each other in her and his ministry. With the loving support of this kind of community we can continue to grow and reach others for Christ.

All this is the missional challenge of the church and Trinity Church. The only mission that counts is God’s mission. We need to view the world and Christ’s mission in a new light. We no longer look at the world for any gaps in mission so we can take God to where God isn’t now. Instead, let’s look at the world as God’s- a place where God’s love and care are already, and everywhere, at work. We don’t take mission outside Trinity’s walls – we go out to meet the mission already there.

 

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A Chance to Feed Others and a Chance to Feed Your Soul

By Eileen Gilmer, Associate Pastor

How did it get to be November? I know I ask myself this question each year. As we move closer to Advent, I have two great opportunities for you. They offer ways to nourish and renew; one is for others and one is for you. In this busy time of year, I hope you’ll find space in your schedule to take part.

The first is Rise Against Hunger. (That’s the new name for Stop Hunger Now.) This is a wonderful project that helps feed the hungry across the globe. Families are welcome to attend. (Children should be ages four and up.) It’s a good opportunity for multi-generational service. Rise Against Hunger is an international hunger relief organization that helps impoverished people throughout the world. Trinity has supported this effort for several years.

Our goal is to make 300,000 meals at our McLean event. The meal packages we assemble that day will be sent to Nicaragua, which was ravished by Hurricane Nate. Come join people from all over the area to help!

Rise Against Hunger

Saturday, November 4

Lutheran Church of the Redeemer

Shifts start at 8 a.m., 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.

To sign up, just let me know and I can register you, or go to https://www.facebook.com/StopHungerNowMcLean

The second event is an Advent Bible study. It’s based on Max Lucado’s book Because of Bethlehem. Cokesbury publishers describes the Bible study this way: Because of Bethlehem, God knows what it is like to be a human. When we talk to God about our challenges, our struggles, and our tough times, God understands, because he’s been there. God’s been here. This Advent study will remind us of these truths and give us hope.

I have some books ordered, so if you would like one let me know. They are also offered through Amazon or Cokesbury.com.

Because of Bethlehem

November 12 & 19, December 3 & 10

9:30 a.m.

Fellowship Building, Room 302

I’ll see you at church!

 

Church & Society: Nov. 2017

Fall Good Works Day – Fun-Filled Success

Thank you to all the volunteers who rolled up their sleeves and worked hard alongside their fellow congregants to make Fall Good Works Day a fun-filled success! We did work all around the church building and yard, wrote letters to the children at the Heart to Heart Village in Honduras, assembled books for Stanton Elementary, and took a trip to help at Share. We hope to see everyone at the next Good Works Day next Spring!

Science Day at DC Scholars at Stanton Elementary School

Join us in volunteering for DC Scholars at Stanton Elementary’s annual Science Day for 4th and 5th graders! We will carpool from the Trinity parking lot at 8 a.m. on November 6 (Fairfax Teacher Work Day) and return back to Trinity around 2 p.m. Please contact Suzanne Hamilton if you are interested in volunteering.

Collections for Share

During the months of November and December, we are collecting tuna, rice in 2 lb. bags, cooking oil, canned beans, peanut butter, pasta and sauce, diapers (especially sizes 4-6), baby wipes, baby shampoo, diaper rash cream, toilet paper, paper towels, laundry and dish soap and Safeway/Giant gift cards for Share. Share is a food pantry and family assistance program located in the heart of McLean that serves approximately 300 needy families from McLean, Great Falls, and the Pimmit Hills area of Falls Church each month. Please place your donations in the bins outside the Sanctuary and in the Fellowship Lobby (please drop off Safeway/Giant gift cards in the church office).

 Thanksgiving Feast

Our churchwide Thanksgiving Feast will take place on Sunday, November 12, after the 10:30 worship service. The entire congregation is invited to Langley Hall with your favorite potluck dish to share. Watch the bulletin for more information. Please bring canned beans, 2 lb. bags of rice or peanut butter to be donated to Share, and plan to join us for this delicious feast. Everyone is welcome!

Angel Tree Time!

Even though it’s not even Thanksgiving, it isn’t too early to start thinking about Christmas trees – or at least trees with angels attached. In the Narthex, you’ll soon see a tree adorned with angels. Each angel represents someone in our community who is helped by Share, an organization that provides food, clothing and financial assistance. By selecting an angel, and bringing in a gift, you’ll be sharing Christ’s love with those in our community who are most in need.

Your Voice Matters

By James C. Sprouse, Senior Pastor

Here are some concerns our Next Level Innovation weekend, October 20-22, is designed to address. Did you know there are hundreds of thousands of persons living in northern Virginia who have no church home? Barna and other church research groups place the percentage of persons without church affiliation between 50 & 60%. Trinity and the NLI Team want to open its arms and reach out to this growing community of persons seeking, but not finding the right place to meet their spiritual needs. Even before we reach out to these persons we already know lots about them.

Persons who are seekers of church homes or new church homes tend to fit the following profile:

  • They prefer worship services that are shorter, well designed and have a lively flow and tempo, not necessarily held in a sanctuary; often a fellowship hall is preferred.
  • They prefer loud, upbeat, faster paced pop/contemporary music sound.
  • Their loyalty is won through excellence in ministry and adult education.
  • They require a community of faith to help them sort out the hurts in their lives through practical messages, classes and small groups.
  • They prefer short-term opportunities, activities and commitments.
  • They prefer a focus on local ministries rather than far away places.

God has blessed our Trinity Church with some of the finest lay and clergy leadership in the country. The time is very right for us to intensify our outreach to persons seeking a church home. I request that you support our Next Level Innovation weekend with your prayers. Encourage and guide our leaders with your ideas and suggestions. Offer your own time, spiritual gifts and, when possible, your financial resources to help make this ministry a powerful witness for Jesus Christ in the United Methodist tradition.

Remember, our Next Level Innovation weekend is October 20-22. Lots of things will be happening but we need you on Saturday the 21st for the all-important visioning session from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. We will serve you lunch and child care is available when you register. YOU are necessary so we can clearly hear what God is already doing in this church, and hear what God is challenging us to do next.

We need to hear from younger, older, families, singles, leaders and non-leaders. We want to fill Langley Hall with 100 people because your voice matters. We understand that Saturdays in the fall are busy, but I hope you will choose to spend October 21 with us for this very important moment in Trinity Church’s life. So please respond with your participation. To sign-up, please visit our website: umtrinity.org/get-involved/nli.

Related articles:

Next Level Innovation Weekend

Next Level Innovation and a Bible Story

October 2017 Schedule of Event

Oct. 1 Executive Committee (by phone)
Oct. 1 Pet Blessing, 2 p.m. Our annual blessing and giving thanks for our furry, finned and scaly members of our families. See more.
Oct. 8 Martha’s Table Sandwich Making We’ll make 900 sandwiches and snack baggies for the homeless.
Oct. 9 Office Closed
Oct. 9 Crafts for a Cause
7—8:30 p.m.
Join us as we prepare for our Holiday Bazaar. Learn more.
Oct. 14 Good Works Day

9 a.m.—12 p.m.

A day of service projects for the church and our community. Sign up now (by Oct. 8) for some of the projects. See more.
Oct. 15 Child Protection Training An annual training workshop for anyone who works with children, youth and at-risk adults. To learn more.
Oct. 15 Laity Sunday Worship will be planned and led by Trinity’s laity.
Oct. 17 Trustees meeting (phone)
Oct. 20-22 Next Level Innovation Weekend How can we be the best Trinity Church that we can be? Learn more.
Oct. 22 One worship service at 10:30 a.m. The message will be presented by the NLI Team.
Oct. 23 Crafts for a Cause
7—8:30 p.m.
Join us as we prepare for our Holiday Bazaar. Learn more.
Oct. 27 Trunk or Treat
6:30—8 p.m.
For details, click here.
Oct. 29 Concert to benefit Share,
6 p.m.
Multi-choir concert and service fair at 2034 Great Falls St. For more.
Nov. 1 Charge Conference, 7 p.m. Everyone is invited.

October Collection Drive

During the month of October, we are collecting items for Christ House, an inpatient medical facility for homeless men in Adams Morgan in DC. Christ House is the only facility of its kind in the Washington, DC, metropolitan area where over 6,000 people experience homelessness every day. We are collecting new or gently used men’s clothing items (medium – 2XL): sweatpants, undershirts, long-sleeved t-shirts, short-sleeved t-shirts and men’s shoes (sizes 9 – 13): shower shoes, tennis or other shoes. Please place donations in the bins outside the sanctuary and in the fellowship building.

Please contact Alexandra Kiefer with questions about the drive or any other Church and Society committee programs.

Crafts for a Cause Gets Ready for Christmas

Crafts for a Cause is already getting ready for the holidays, as work has begun on the 50 flannel Christmas stockings we make for newborns at Fair Oaks Hospital. Work is also underway for the annual Holiday Bazaar, set to start Sun., Nov. 19, after both worship services, and continuing Sundays until Dec. 17.

You can be a part of all this by attending the work sessions, scheduled on alternating Monday nights from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in Room 124. Upcoming dates: Oct. 9 and Oct. 23. Activities include cutting and sewing fabric, stuffing pillows and dolls, and on occasion, card stamping and jewelry making.

Recently, we’ve been blessed with the donation of baby hats knitted and crocheted by members of the Lewinsville Senior Center of McLean and the Pimmit HIlls Senior Center of Falls Church. Thanks to Naty de las Alas for coordinating. Also, thanks to Nell Gilmore and Rory Hartsoe for their ongoing donations of knitted caps. Fair Oaks Hospital is always grateful!

For more information on Crafts for a Cause, contact Molly Sprouse.